Flat Earthers prove the Earth is round

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Sep 22, 2018
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The lesson here is, don't spend $20k on a device to test your theory if you're unwilling to face what you learn from it. Also, HA HA.

Flat Earthers Spend $20,000 Trying To Prove Earth Is Flat, Accidentally Prove It's Round
In what may be one of the most satisfying TV moments we can recall, a group of conspiracy theorists have accidentally spent thousands of dollars to prove that yes, actually, the Earth is round.

The scene in a new Netflix documentary called Behind the Curve, which follows a group of Flat Earthers, a "small but growing contingent of people who firmly believe in a conspiracy to suppress the truth that the Earth is flat".

One of those Flat Earthers is Bob Knodel, who hosts a YouTube channel entirely dedicated to the theory and who is one of the team relying on a $20,000 laser gyroscope to prove the Earth doesn't actually rotate.

Except... It does.
 

Innula Zenovka

Nasty Brit
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Sep 20, 2018
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The video made me laugh, too, but I wasn't sure what the experiment was supposed to prove in the first place.

As I understand it, the curvature of the earth is such that, at sea level, an object will vanish below the horizon at about 3.1 miles/ 5 km.

While I'm not up to doing the calculations I would have thought the two apertures through which the two chaps were shining their light beam would have needed to be considerably further apart than they were before the effect of the earth's curvature was noticeable to the naked eye.
 
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detrius

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Sep 20, 2018
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Land of bread, beer and BMW.
I've actually watched the documentary already a few weeks ago.

There's a moment when the chief flat earther argues that if the Earth was round, you wouldn't be able to see Seattle from his house, which is in an elevated position and separated from Seattle by a stretch of water.

Then the camera swings around and you see the top floors of a few Seattle skyscrapers in the distance - but no beaches or ships in the harbour.
 
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Bartholomew Gallacher

Well-known member
Sep 26, 2018
573
The most important thing about this experiment is that they got the proof, but are in denial about it. At the end of the documentary they presented their experiment as proof for the flat Earth.

By the way, prooving the globe is really easy and you don't need to spend 20K US$ on it: all you do need is a camera, any smartphone will do, and a wide range photo of the horizon of any sea. The horizon will show up normally as a flat line in Photoshop/GIMP. Now just squeeze (not simply scaling!) the photo horizontally - if Earth is flat, the horizon will remain flat. But since it's curved, the curvature will show up exposed in the photo. Proof done.
 

Beebo Brink

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Sep 20, 2018
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This is a symptom of many of the same dynamics that led to Trump's election.

Growing numbers of people are feeling ineffectual, overlooked, irrelevant. They are lost in a world of increasing complexity, bewildered by the "math" and all the other information with which they are bombarded.

The Flat Earth movement is just one way that individuals can restore their sense of self. The dissenters frame themselves as knowledgeable and heroic. They are the few who know the Truth, who rise above the sheeple around them. They are fighting against the forces of convention and assimilation. These are very powerful emotions, and they serve as antidotes to the increasing irrelevance of being a single human in the vast over-populated pool of labor in industrialized nations. I'd be curious to know whether they're overwhelming White Male, which would be my guess. Again, a subset of the population who is feeling especially threatened because their unquestioned dominance is waning.

I'd rather they be out there playing with lights to prove the Earth is flat than stockpiling guns.
 

Myficals

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If you've a vague interest in what flatearthers believe, why they may think the way they do, and you have 45 minutes to spare, hbomberguy recently published an entertaining and insightful examination of the "movement."

 
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Rose Karuna

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This is a symptom of many of the same dynamics that led to Trump's election.

Growing numbers of people are feeling ineffectual, overlooked, irrelevant. They are lost in a world of increasing complexity, bewildered by the "math" and all the other information with which they are bombarded.

The Flat Earth movement is just one way that individuals can restore their sense of self. The dissenters frame themselves as knowledgeable and heroic. They are the few who know the Truth, who rise above the sheeple around them. They are fighting against the forces of convention and assimilation. These are very powerful emotions, and they serve as antidotes to the increasing irrelevance of being a single human in the vast over-populated pool of labor in industrialized nations. I'd be curious to know whether they're overwhelming White Male, which would be my guess. Again, a subset of the population who is feeling especially threatened because their unquestioned dominance is waning.

I'd rather they be out there playing with lights to prove the Earth is flat than stockpiling guns.
This is honestly a perspective I'd never considered. I was in the troll camp before but you make a some really good points.
 
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Bartholomew Gallacher

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Sep 26, 2018
573
While the flat earthers are quite popular, there's also the smaller group of the hollow earthers, which believe that we are all living in the inside of a hollow globe with a small sun in the centre of it.

Now let's just think about both discussing the true nature of earth... this must be an interesting discussion.
 
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Clara D.

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Dec 24, 2018
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Phoenix, AZ, USA
While the flat earthers are quite popular, there's also the smaller group of the hollow earthers, which believe that we are all living in the inside of a hollow globe with a small sun in the centre of it.

Now let's just think about both discussing the true nature of earth... this must be an interesting discussion.
So the Earth is like pita bread with some people on the outside and some on the inside...
 
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Myficals

Pop!
Sep 19, 2018
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This is honestly a perspective I'd never considered. I was in the troll camp before but you make a some really good points.
If we were discussing this even five years ago, then you'd probably be right to think them trolls. The original online incarnation of The Flat Earth Society was a parody site in much the same vein as the Lannover Baptists, and has been on the internet as least as long. In the last few years though, there's been a shift. The modern "movement" that's mostly sprung up as almost a cult following of one particular guy, Mark Sargent, is quite serious. These people really believe the earth is flat, and "globeheads" who believe otherwise, are deluded sheeple. The video I linked to above has some speculation on why that's very much in line with what Beebo's saying; it's basically about reasserting control against a world they feel is fundamentally wrong.

What I find interesting about them (and by interesting I mean hilarious), is how much crossover there seems to be with the online "sceptic" community. You know the guys. The ones who enjoy explaining how they're not really racist or sexist, they're just "rational" and if their "rationality" has hurt your feeling, you're just an idiot, labouring under the yoke of the feminazis. More than a few flat earthers are also "sceptics," which should tell you something about the values of both "movements."
 

Bartholomew Gallacher

Well-known member
Sep 26, 2018
573
What none of the flat earthers was able to explain ever is this: if there's really such a conspiracy, including NASA, the government and others, in which they do believe, how comes that all their videos never get deleted on Youtube instantly? Over one million videos alone on Youtube without any major censorship, that's for sure a big and evil conspiracy at work!
 
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Kara Spengler

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Sep 20, 2018
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There might be some trollers within their ranks, but most of them sadly do really believe in it. That's the problem about it.
That sounds about right. It is WAY to easy to troll that subject but it is also clear that some people take it seriously.
 

Kara Spengler

Queer OccupyE9 Sluni-Goon
Sep 20, 2018
1,456
SL: November RL: DC
If you've a vague interest in what flatearthers believe, why they may think the way they do, and you have 45 minutes to spare, hbomberguy recently published an entertaining and insightful examination of the "movement."

Thanks but I value my time more than that. Maybe when I am goofing off. Considering they have various different maps and such it is hard to take them seriously.